Brave is a free and open-source internet browser based on Chromium. Because Brave uses a Chromium platform, it could be a good choice for Chrome users looking to switch to a more private browser. It has built-in ad and tracker blocking which makes browsing with this already speedy browser even faster.
How Does Brave Work?
Brave’s core functionality is the same as most other popular browsers. It’s built on the same framework as Google Chrome so much of the functionality is the exact same. Brave uses normal browser functionality combined with it’s new way of thinking about advertising-supported websites. Its creators believe that the best way to improve the internet as a whole is to find a new way to support content creators outside of the traditional advertising model.
Brave encrypts your personal information in the browser and doesn’t send that information to its servers or store it in their databases. Brave uses an anonymous payment system called Brave Rewards to replace the ad revenue that websites would otherwise receive from your viewing their pages. This payment system won’t reveal which sites you support or who you are.
Brave identifies poor performing ads, or those that hinder user experiences. It then relies on its Basic Attention Token ecosystem to replace these ads with higher-quality ads, and then rewards the websites with it’s anonymous payment system.
Brave Browser Features:
- Ad Blocking
- Fingerprinting Prevention
- Cookie Control
- HTTPS By Default
- Script Blocking
- Site-To-Site Blocking Settings
- Global Blocking Settings
- Built-In Password Manager
What Makes Brave a Good Browser?
Brave’s two main features are its speed and its privacy. The most popular browsers (Chrome, Firefox, Safari and Edge) will be slower if they don’t block ads, and aren’t always configured with user privacy in mind.
“On the desktop, Brave loads pages twice as fast as Chrome and Firefox, the No. 1 and No. 3 browsers in the world as ranked by analytics vendor Net Applications. On a smartphone, Brave loads pages up to eight times faster than Chrome (Android) or Safari (iOS).”
Is Brave Browser Free?
Yes, Brave is free to download and free to use. If you choose to keep ads hidden on certain sites you can make micro-payments to them in BAT, but other than that using Brave is free.
Is Brave a Secure Browser?
Unlike other browsers and the companies behind them, Brave is focused on not collecting user data, and prioritizing user privacy. One of its top priorities is to protect its users’ information and protect them from tracking and malware. Brave doesn’t collect or store your browsing data on its servers.
Brave lets you choose which ads and trackers it blocks. This ability to pick and choose which ads you see and which trackers you let run is what makes Brave a respectable choice for your browser. Rather than locking down your security on every website, even if it means losing functionality, Brave will let you allow the essential aspects of a page to load and run.
Your browser knows almost everything you do on the internet, as such it’s important to use a reliable and secure option rather than the mainstream products that most people use. Brave is an audited and open-source browser which protects your data on your device.
Smooth Functionality and Security
One of the issues with security and privacy tools is that they often give up usability in favor of privacy and security. Brave has many unique features that many privacy-focused browsers skip over. For example, Brave Sync lets you keep your preferred settings, configurations and bookmarks synced across multiple devices, but keeps this data in encrypted and secure form.
Read More: The Best Internet Privacy Tools for 2019
What is BAT (Basic Attention Token)?
The Basic Attention Token (BAT) is an open-source, decentralized ad exchange platform based on the blockchain-based computing platform Ethereum. The purpose of this attention token is to let Brave users tip websites and content creators to compensate publishers in place of ads. Brave also uses BAT to reward users for opting in to its own ads in place of the ads it blocks.
Brave and it’s creators recognize that ads are an integral part of the internet, but don’t need to be obtrusive. Using BAT as a way to incentivize web users to view ads, will make the overall user-experience much better. Rather than making their ads more obnoxious, which would lead people to use ad blockers, websites can simply pay for people’s attention.
If users would rather not see ads on a given site, they can use “micro-payments” to these sites. As a result, the sites will still receive “ad revenue” from these users, without having to display ads.
How Much BAT Could You Earn With Brave?
Since the BAT Rewards feature isn’t active yet, we haven’t determined how much a person could earn using the browser. If the BAT rewards are equivalent to the cost of buying a traditional display ad, sites that participate could pay users a couple dollars per visit.
Chrome Extensions Work With Brave
Since Brave is built on Chromium, an open-source browser project that also forms the basis of Google Chrome, browser extensions for Chrome also work on Brave.
Who Is Behind Brave?
- Brian Bondy – Co-founder & CTO: Brian Bondy is the founder and lead developer for Brave Software. He previously worked at Khan Academy, Mozilla and Evernote.
Brave Browser Review
Brave has been labelled as malware by some critics, who argue that the new advertising model that Brave uses is basically an ad injector. However, we think that Brave’s privacy features and ad-blocking features make it a better choice than a browser like Chrome or Safari. Brave’s integration of blockchain makes it a reputable browser from a security standpoint.
Brave is a lightweight, high-performance browser. Because Brave doesn’t have all of Google’s proprietary integrations like Chrome does, it is faster and more resource-efficient than Chrome.
Brave comes in a sleek and design-forward package with easy to use menus and settings pages. The browser’s functionality is intuitive and easy to understand. The Basic Attention Token integration could be quite complicated but is easily picked up.
Brave’s security menu gives users insight into how many trackers were blocked, how many sites were redirected to their HTTPS version and how many scripts were blocked. Brave alerts you whenever you try to visit a website that doesn’t have https-encryption enabled.
Brave is based on Chromium which gets updated once every two weeks. However, Brave is updated less often at once every three to four weeks. This means that if a security vulnerability is discovered, hackers will have more time to exploit that vulnerability.
Alternatives to Brave Browser
- Tor Browser: Tor Browser lets you easily access the Tor network with
- lets you use Tor on Microsoft Windows, Apple MacOS, or GNU/Linux without needing to install any software. It can run off a USB flash drive, comes with a pre-configured web browser to protect your anonymity, and is self-contained (portable). Tor keeps you anonymous by bouncing your internet communications around a distributed network of relays run by volunteers all over the world. It prevents somebody watching your Internet connection from learning what sites you visit, it prevents the sites you visit from learning your physical location, and it lets you access sites which are blocked.
- Firefox: Mozilla has added many new privacy protection features to its latest versions of Firefox. Firefox warns users when login forms aren’t secure and could be leaking private information. It also blocks insecure content from loading on secure web pages. Another unique feature is the built-in phishing and malware protection.
- Chromium: There are a number of other private browsers that are built on Chromium. The one knock that Chromium takes is that there are a number of malware programs that disguise themselves as Chromium. If you are installing Chromium on your computer, make sure you are downloading it from a reliable source. Chromium is a better option for more technically adept users, because many of the conveniences of Chrome, like Auto-Update, aren’t included in Chromium.
- Vivaldi: Vivaldi is a freeware, cross-platform web browser developed by Vivaldi Technologies. It was officially launched in April 2016. The browser is intended for general users, but is specifically targeted towards more technically-inclined users.
- Opera: Opera is a freeware browser available for Windows, Android, iOS, macOS and Linux operating systems. It’s developed by Opera Software which is a publically traded company. Opera is built on Chromium but is differentiated by its unique user-interface.